Swiss Nexussquared Launches Nexuslab – a Virtual Blockchain Startup Programme

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Taking a novel approach to fostering startups, Switzerland’s Nexussquared is launching Nexuslab – introducing a programme inspired by the blockchain paradigms of decentralisation, trust and efficiency. To extend the range and expertise of its mentor network, the programme will collaborate with Startupbootcamp Fintech.

The programme is for early-stage European companies that have already acquired seed funding.

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Nexussquared, established by Daniel Grassinger from real estate consulting and workplace design firm Aecom and UBS tech bod Daniel Gasteiger, is embarking on a six-month build out to create a platform for mentoring and growing startups with the aim of acting as a catalyst for the development of international fintech businesses out of Switzerland.

Nexuslab programme founder Daniel Grassinger said:

“When planning our programme, we studied the needs of new fintech and especially blockchain ventures very closely. It soon became clear that many of them operate in virtual teams spread across different countries. Based on these findings, we designed Nexuslab, a startup support programme that aligns with the virtual nature of many new fintech ventures, allowing them to source talent based on skills rather than location.”

The three-month blockchain programme will pair aspiring startups with mentors from Startupbootcamp Fintech and cryptocurrency experts over an online platform to provide tailored coaching sessions and on-demand training.

Three weekend hangout sessions in major European cities will provide founders of participating startups with the opportunity to meet face-to-face and learn directly from successful fintech companies. During the final month of the programme, all teams will gather at the Nexuslab pop-up lab in Zurich for additional in-person mentoring and to prepare their ideas for a pitch day.

Throughout the program, the start-ups will be individually matched with senior level mentors and financial services experts to receive practical advice on regulatory, technical and commercial aspects of their specific business. nexuslab will collaborate with Startupbootcamp Fintech to provide participants access to selected experts and build on Startupbootcamp’s experience of helping and growing startups. During the final month of the programme, all teams will gather at the nexuslab pop-up lab in Zurich for additional in-person mentoring and to prepare their ideas for a pitch day.

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The first round of Nexuslab will start in March 2016. Pre-registration is open now and the official submission period will run from 1 January to 12 February 2016.

Nexuslab will consider applications both from teams with convincing early-stage ideas and startups that have already acquired seed funding. At least one of the founders needs to be based in Europe. nexuslab is open to fintech ventures with business models based on or related to blockchain technology. The programme features three tollgates at which a decision will be made whether a team will progress to the next stage. This built-in selection mechanism allows nexuslab to start with a larger pool of teams and give entrepreneurs with early-stage ideas a chance to prove themselves.

Please pre-register now, in order to receive further information once application-phase starts.

About Richard Kastelein

In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, ' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, the Netherlands where he has set down his anchor to raise a family and write.

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015) and director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He has written over 2500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published in Harvard Business Review, Venturebeat, Wired, The Guardian and a number of other publications.

Kastelein has an Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute software and Technology. He has over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the EuropeanCommission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division. Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology at over 50 events in 30+ cities.

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